DENVER – The Consumer Protection Section of the Colorado Attorney General Office has filed a civil lawsuit and obtained a temporary restraining order against air duct cleaning company, The Finest Air Duct Cleaning, Inc. The company has an F rating with the Better Business Bureau of Denver/Boulder and was a primary focus in the BBB’s recent industry-wide examination of advertising practices.
As seen in the BBB’s advertising reviews and the Colorado Attorney General’s investigation, the company offered a “whole house air duct cleaning” for $34.99 in its advertisements but when technicians arrived to begin service, the price jumped substantially. The temporary restraining order prohibits the defendants from making misleading advertisements about their prices and the quality of their services and requires the owners to meet certain basic standards of competence as set forth by the National Air Duct Cleaners Association.
“We are very proud that we can be an important resource to the Attorney General and other offices that work to protect consumers,” said Su Hawk, president and CEO with the BBB of Denver/Boulder. The BBB shared information with the Colorado Attorney General’s office that helped lead to the action taken against the company.
Earlier this year, the BBB released the results if an investigation into the advertising practices of the air duct cleaning industry. As a result of the study, the BBB requested 21 companies to change and/or substantiate advertising claims based on BBB Code of Advertising guidelines. Most advertisers complied and the few that did not were given “F” ratings from the BBB, including The Finest Air Duct Cleaning, Inc.
In addition to monitoring, correcting and reporting abuses in advertising and sales practices, the BBB continues to advise the public on how to make smart consumer decisions. When considering an air duct cleaning service, follow these BBB tips:
· Always check companies out with the BBB first and find BBB Accredited air duct cleaners by visiting denver.bbb.org or by calling 303-758-2100.
· Beware of any company that makes sweeping claims about health hazards of dirty air ducts. According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), duct cleaning has never been shown to actually prevent health problems.
· Don’t fall for prices that are too good to be true. It’s common for usually low prices to not be honored. Compare costs with several other air duct cleaners. The BBB offers a complimentary “Request A Quote” service for all consumers and businesses.
· Get written estimates from at least three different service providers before deciding whether to have your ducts cleaned. If the service provider charges by the hour, request an estimate of the number of hours or days the job will take, and find out whether there will be interruptions in the work.
· Interview potential service providers to ensure that they are experienced and will use procedures to protect you, your pets, and your home from contamination.
· Note that air duct cleaners do not require a state license.
· Check with the National Air Duct Cleaners Association (NADCA) which verifies that members have industry-specific training and education.
· Ask if the company is fully insured and has worker's compensation, if required.
· Ask for several references and research companies.
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About the BBB
The BBB is an unbiased nonprofit organization that sets and upholds high standards for fair and honest business behavior. Businesses that earn BBB Accreditation contractually agree and adhere to the organization’s high standards of ethical business behavior. The BBB provides objective advice, BBB Business Reviews, BBB Charity Reports and educational information on topics affecting marketplace trust. To further promote trust, your BBB also offers dispute resolution services for consumers and businesses. The first BBB was founded in 1912. Today, there are 113 local, independent BBBs across the U. S. and Canada. Please visit denver.bbb.org for more information.